Members Area

Fancy a tour of Hong Kong in a Rolls-Royce? Start bidding now in the FCC’s online auction

As part of the FCC’s ‘Hong Kong Remembers’ fundraising, a silent auction platform has been launched with a great range of items up for grabs.

The FCC's online bidding site is simple to use. The FCC’s online bidding site is simple to use.

A sumptuous dinner at The China Club, helicopter flights, a stay in Hong Kong’s newest hotel, not to mention a tour of Hong Kong in a vintage Rolls-Royce followed by tea at The Peninsula are some of the ‘lifestyle’ items available, complemented by a unique collection of items donated by our FCC members, including photographs and cartoons of some of the momentous events of recent Hong Kong history.

The auction site is now open and you can view the items available and place your bids at www.fccfundraiser.com

Registering on the site and placing bids is easy so please take a look and use this opportunity to help our nominated charity, The China Coast Community.

As with the raffle (tickets available at reception), all funds raised will go to our chosen charity thanks to the phenomenal generosity of our FCC members and friends who have donated the items.

Hong Kong Remembers raffle tickets now on sale – and a snip at $50 each

With 70 great prizes, the FCC’s ‘Hong Kong Remembers’ raffle is not only a key part of the club’s charitable drive to raise funds for the China Coast Community, but also a great chance to secure some fabulous swag.

FCC members and friends have rallied round to donate an extensive prize list of prizes: two nights stay at The Peninsula, Bangkok; dinner for four at Crown Wine Cellars; lunch for 10 at the famed Ming Kee in Po Toi; books signed by authors Chris Patten and David Tang as well as 13 other FCC member authors; rare copies of late FCC legend Marvin Farkas’s seminal Asian gangster movie ‘Wit’s End’; together with a range of wines and spirits are just some of the items up for grabs.

Tickets priced at HK$50 each are available at the FCC reception, so pick up a few when you collect your tickets to the March 25th ‘Hong Kong Remembers’ extravaganza. If you can’t make that date, support the event by buying a few tickets. The raffle will be drawn at 22.30hrs on March 25th and results posted in the club, on the FCC website and in newspapers.

Hong Kong's last British colonial governor Chris Patten gestures as he speaks at the Foreign Correspondents Club in Hong Kong on November 25, 2016. Hong Kong’s last British colonial governor Chris Patten, pictured here in November 2016, has signed a book for the FCC raffle.
/ AFP PHOTO / Anthony WALLACE

The FCC’s Journalism Conference 2017: Fake news, social media and story pitching are top topics

The FCC's first Journalism Conference featured panelists of senior editors and reporters from around the region. Photo: Asiapix The FCC’s first Journalism Conference featured panelists of senior editors and reporters from around the region. Photo: Asiapix

Save the date – Saturday, April 29 – for the Foreign Correspondents’ Club Hong Kong’s second journalism conference, back by popular demand.

The day will feature practical workshops and discussions by panels of experts relevant to journalists at all stages of their careers. Topics will range from fake news to virtual reality, drone videos, making the best of social media, how to pitch stories and how to sell the Hong Kong story to an international audience and reporting in China, plus many more.

Speakers include reporters and editors from major news organisations such as The New York Times, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Thomson Reuters, Bloomberg, BBC, Time, the Financial Times and Quartz.

Details will be sent out along with booking forms in mid-March, with preferential early sign up for Correspondent and Journalist members.

READ MORE: FCC Journalism Conference 2016 – covering news in an era of digital disruption

FCC statement on prosecution of BBC Southeast Asia correspondent Jonathan Head

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club Hong Kong is appalled by the criminal defamation and Computer Crimes Act case in Thailand against Jonathan Head, the BBC’s Southeast Asia correspondent. The charges, initiated by a private citizen over Head’s reporting on foreign retirees who were scammed in Phuket, carry a possible five-year prison sentence. Head had to surrender his passport, seriously impeding his ability to report across Asia.

Head’s case is emblematic of the state of press freedom in Thailand. Laws pertaining to criminal defamation, computer crimes and lese majeste are routinely abused, both by authorities and private citizens, to harass and silence journalists. The end result is a climate of fear that leads to self-censorship, depriving Thai citizens of free speech and access to reliable information, and enabling a culture of impunity for the powerful and shameless.

The FCCHK stands in support of our colleagues in Thailand. It calls on those responsible to throw out the case against Head. Moreover, Thailand’s leaders should undertake long overdue reform of laws regarding criminal defamation, computer crimes, and lese-majeste.

Journalists should be free to do their jobs responsibly without fear of frivolous lawsuits that deprive them of time, money, and the ability to travel freely for months or years. In addition, private citizens shouldn’t be able to launch cases that carry criminal penalties, particularly given the current lack of even common sense oversight.

FCCC statement on harassment of BBC journalists in Hunan province

The following is a statement issued by the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China for its members.

FCCC statement on harassment of BBC journalists in Hunan province

The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of China condemns the harassment of and violence against a team of BBC journalists in Hunan province this week in an attempt to prevent them from reporting the story of a Chinese petitioner who was attempting to travel to Beijing to protest, ahead of the start of the National People’s Congress on Sunday.

Despite having the interviewee’s prior consent, BBC correspondent John Sudworth and his team were prevented from meeting her by a group of men who refused to identify themselves. The BBC journalists were assaulted and had their camera equipment broken.

Later, in the presence of uniformed police officers and government officials, the same men forced the BBC team to sign a written confession and apology, under the threat of further violence.

This violent effort to deter news coverage is a gross violation of Chinese government rules governing foreign correspondents, which expressly permit them to interview anybody who consents to be interviewed.

The FCCC is also alarmed that the BBC journalists were forced to sign a “confession” simply for carrying out their professional duties according to Chinese law.

The FCCC calls on the Chinese government and police to take steps to prevent foreign reporters who are legally allowed to work in China from being subjected to such violence and intimidation.

Journalists in China have reported increasing harassment by authorities. The 2016 FCCC survey of working conditions for correspondents, released last November, found increased use of force and manhandling by authorities against journalists performing their work. Some correspondents have also been called in to unspecified meetings with the State Security Bureau.

Fully 98% of the survey’s respondents said reporting conditions rarely meet international standards, while 29% said conditions had deteriorated.

Harassment, detention and questioning of sources remains worryingly common. 57% of correspondents said they personally had been subjected to some form of interference, harassment or violence while attempting to report in China.

Me and the Media: Writer and editor Alex Frew McMillan

Journalist and editor Alex Frew McMillan. Photo CC Kei. Journalist and editor Alex Frew McMillan. Photo CC Kei.

Alex Frew McMillan is a feature writer and editor, the last 13 years specialising in real-estate coverage and business reporting.

Previously: CNN, as a business reporter, and Reuters, as the Asia real-estate correspondent.

Now: Regular contributor to TheStreet.com, and is also the Asia editor of Modus, the magazine of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. As a free-lancer, he has written for The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, Forbes, the Economist Intelligence Unit and CNBC.

What made you want to work in the media?

I didn’t want to work in the media at all. I want(ed) to be a novelist! But I have one problem, in that I never write any fiction at all. I have finally accepted that I am a non-fiction writer.

I love the news. I have always had a great and broad general interest. I find many topics interesting and love exploring ideas. And I am not great with routine – I love that news is always different, always changing. Most of all, though, I love taking complex topics and breaking them down in ways that are (with any luck) interesting, understandable and entertaining.

Being a freelancer is hard, and unstable. But I hate working in someone else’s office. I feel I am wasting my life away that way.

What has been a career high point?

Alex Frew McMillan. Alex Frew McMillan.

That is difficult to say. To be honest, the high points are whenever a reader approaches me and asks me a question about a story. I always say that a writer only needs one reader.

There is one strange thing about writing for me. Whenever I finish and file a story, I am sick of it and don’t think it’s any good. Then, later, when I come across an old piece, I realise it’s actually pretty well-written.

And a career low point?

There are so many! I would say that I did not make the most of my time at Reuters. I thought that the job was telling me what to do. I didn’t realise that I needed to tell the job what I wanted to do, and do it.

What career advice would you give to your younger self?

Don’t be afraid to take risks. In fact, seek them out. If there’s a question that you are afraid to ask, that is exactly the question you have to ask. And of course, spell everyone’s name right.

World Press Freedom Day

FCC and HKJA statement on escalating violence and threats against Sing Pao Daily and its staff

Sing Pao Daily's website Sing Pao Daily’s website

The Hong Kong Journalists Association and the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Hong Kong strongly condemn the escalating violence and threats against Sing Pao Daily and its staff.

The campaign of terror, which has been going on for more than a week, is on the surface an outrageous attempt to silence the paper.

One of its senior editors had his house door smeared with red paint yesterday. This followed the shadowing of its senior staff; posting of threatening posters outside an employee’s home; flooding of hate phone calls and emails to its editorial team and attack on its website which is now down.

It is unthinkable that these incidents are happening despite three earlier reports made to the police by the newspaper’s management.

This is an outright challenge to law and order in Hong Kong as well as a threat to press freedom which is enshrined in the Basic Law.

The Association calls on the government and the police to step up efforts to protect the newspaper’s staff and to bring the culprit(s) to justice

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